Ship operators may fall into BWMS bottleneck

Stelios and Susanna Susanna Wyllie, global proposals manager for Balpure, with managing director Dr Stelios Kyriacou. Credit: Rebecca Jeffrey

Shipowners are “playing with fire” if they haven’t complied with the IMO’s Ballast Water Management Convention standards by the required deadlines, the managing director of De Nora has warned.

Dr Stelios Kyriacou said in a meeting hosted by British Engineering Manufacturers Association (BEMA) there was a consensus that shipowners and operators are running out of time in placing orders and selecting equipment, which is already resulting in “various areas of bottlenecks.”

“What we’ve said is everyone’s taking their time at the moment and everybody’s looking at BWMS prices, which is a fair thing to look into but and in reality, time is running short,” Dr Kyriacou stated.

Lengthy wait

He pointed out that while companies can take orders, these may take six months or more to fulfil.

“One of the critical issues is the engineering companies providing services are almost at the brim of production,” he explained.

Some engineering companies say business is doing really well but they have had to turn customers away because they know they cannot fulfil orders within the desired timeframe, he added. These companies are also not all expanding their workforces because this surge in business is only “a bubble”, there still wouldn’t be able to guarantee parts and they would have to lose staff later.

Susanna Wyllie, global proposals manager for Balpure, De Nora's slipstream electrochlorination ballast water treatment system, said that about 64 units have been sold for 55 vessels and customers who have already purchased the system have recently been utilising them more but it is its difficult to get across that the system is a requirement and does add some value aside from the cost.

“We are in this market to partner with the shipowners and support them throughout the life of the vessel,” she said.

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